Density links – process and constraints

Zoning notice from Burlington, VT – CC image from Don Shall

The ‘right’ density: In the process of putting this post together, I missed Ryan Avent’s piece in The Economist, mentioning some of the broader consequences of land use regulation constraints. It’s a great summary of some of the key issues regarding density, constraints

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What do we mean by ‘density’?

Greenwich Village – CC image from lumierefl

A few more thoughts on recent discussions of density. Better Cities and Towns offers a summary of Richard Florida’s recent speech (video is corrupted, unfortunately – it gets very choppy 1/3 the way through) at CNU. The twitter summary: quality of place trumps density.

Like previous discussions

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What would change with driverless cars?

Robocar electronics – CC image from Steve Jurvetson

If we can agree that technology doesn’t change geometry, and therefore driverless cars won’t substantially change the fundamental capacity and spatial requirements of our current auto-based transportation systems, then what would they change?

Chris Bradford takes a stab at this question, taking note of Matt Ygleisas’s

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Urban density and innovation

CC image from Seth Waite

One more round on density – this time focusing on affordability via the tangentially related prospect of innovative and creative economies.

Richard Florida chimed in at The Atlantic Cities, asking this:

Stop and think for a moment: What kind of environments spur new innovation, start-ups and high-tech industries? Can

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Driverless cars don’t change geometry

Via the Streetsblog Network, I came across this Salon piece from Michael Lind praising our future driverless car overlords. Angie Schmidt at Streetsblog did a nice job to take down some of Lind’s loaded language, particularly the bits about “rigging markets” (which rings just as hollow as the cries about “social engineering” – as Timothy

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Density helps provide public benefits

Ryan Avent, writing at Architect Magazine, takes a look at the recently floated idea of putting a Redskins practice facility at Reservation 13 in DC. One of the reasons for the backlash against the idea was the opportunity cost of a metro-adjacent, develop-able site (a scarce enough commodity in DC) lying fallow for the purposes

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Rail transport links – carry that weight

CC image from Rob Swatski

Some illustrative links from the world of rail transportation:

From Reason and Rail: Why the freight railroads will never electrify.

This is the problem which freight electrification faces. While electrification would represent a lessening in fuel expenses, especially as the price of oil is expected to rise another 20-30%

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Constraints to affordability

'Truth' – CC image from Kellan

A few items on affordability and development:

Short term vs. long term: Matt Yglesias asks why we’re not building more multi-unit buildings in the face of tremendous demand, and the answer is (broadly speaking) financing:

Karl Smith, citing me, blames anti-density land use rules. Naturally I would like

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